Lines running across bootup;XP wont start normally

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Thread Starter
Oct 29, 2007
New user here asking for some troubleshooting help. This is a strange one, I'm not sure many people have seen something like this but I could be mistaken and I'd like to ask for help. First of all, I have a Dell Dimension 8400 with XP sp2. My boot-up screen has strange vertical and horizontal lines running across the screen. During the Bios loading and XP bootup sequences, the image is messed up with many lines running across the screen in a vertical pattern. When loading other sequences, equal signs seem to cover the screen from head to toe horizontally. When attempting to boot up Windows XP, after XP is loaded the screen goes black and my Monitor goes into power save mode with no way to bring it back except by restarting. It should also be noted that the computer stated my battery voltage was low but it had been saying this for the past month and my current problems just started today. I attempted to do system restore and last good known configuration but both did not work. However, I managed to boot up safe mode and enter it, and when in it none of the previous lines could be seen and it looked as normal as safe mode usually does. Naturally I found this odd. I then went to boot Windows XP in VGA mode, which also worked, but when trying to bump up the screen resolution and set the color depth back to normal, once again the monitor went into power save mode and there was nothing I could do about it. So basically, right now I am stuck using VGA mode until I find a solution.

I'm thinking one of three things right now:

1. My bios is corrupted.
2. The low battery voltage has finally caught up with me and now the monitor automatically saves power by going into power save mode when attempting to go into XP, meaning I will need to buy a new power supply. This doesn't explain the lines problem, however.
3. Something has went wrong with my video card (Geforce 256mb 6600)

I'm not sure what to do. I'd like to avoid completely reinstalling the OS as that would erase all of my data but I'm not sure if I would be wasting my money buying a new power supply and/or video card and still having the same problem I do now. Therefore, I come to you. Can anyone help me?
Oct 21, 2007
Fully remove the old drivers from add/remove programs
Download and install the new drivers
Forceware Drivers:
Archive of older drivers

If you have tried that already in full, then this could actually be a heat issue.

Remove the power cord
Disperse the voltage by holding in the power switch for 20 sec
Remove the side cover
Earth yourself to the case (just touch it and don't move your feet ! )
Remove the Video Card
Blow out all dust on card and in the fan
Also blow out all dust in the computer
Re-mount the video card
Re-mount side cover
Plug power cord (securely) back in
Turn on

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